Data from: Leaf-litter decomposition and macroinvertebrate assemblages along an urban stream gradient in Puerto Rico
Gutiérrez-Fonseca, Pablo E.
Published Jun 13, 2019 on Dryad.
Cite this dataset
Classen-Rodríguez, Leticia; Gutiérrez-Fonseca, Pablo E.; Ramírez., Alonso (2019). Data from: Leaf-litter decomposition and macroinvertebrate assemblages along an urban stream gradient in Puerto Rico [Dataset]. Dryad. https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.j2p05q3
Urbanization is a major land use form that has large impacts on ecosystems. Urban development in the watershed impacts stream ecosystems by increasing nutrient and organic matter loads, altering hydrology, and reducing biodiversity. Puerto Rico is an ideal location to assess and monitor the effects of urbanization on streams, because it is increasingly urbanized and streams do not receive inputs of untreated sewage, characteristic of many other tropical urban areas. The objective of this study was to determine how leaf-litter decomposition and aquatic macroinvertebrate assemblages varied along a tropical urban gradient. We conducted the study in the Río Piedras watershed, San Juan Metropolitan Area, in six low order streams that formed an urban gradient ranging from 10 to 70% urban land cover. At each stream, we placed six 5g leaf bags of Ficus longifolia in three different pools and collected one bag on each sampling date. Decomposition rates were fast in forested streams (range 0.021 – 0.039 day-1) and decreased with increasing urbanization (range 0.007 – 0.008 day-1). Rates were strongly and negatively correlated with percent impervious surface cover (R= 0.81, p=0.01). Functional feeding group diversity was higher in forested streams, with the presence of shredders. Decomposition rates were significantly and positively correlated with functional feeding group diversity and abundance (R= 0.66, p= 0.04). Overall, our results show that urbanization affected the environment and macroinvertebrate diversity resulting in large negative effects on stream ecosystem function.
Leaf Decomposition Data
The percentage of ash free dry mass (%AFDM) remaining for all stream sites throughout the study period. The data includes the stream identification, the replicate number of the leaf bag, the collection day and date, and the % of AFDM remaining.
Macroinvertebrate Abundance Data
Macroinvertebrate abundance associated to the leaf bags for each stream site. The data includes the count of individuals identified from each stream, leaf pack replicate, and collection day.